Christmas Treasures

Posted December 14, 2017 by cathyso3
Categories: Holidays

Tags: , , , , ,

With the holidays upon and preparations in full swing, I came across one of my favorite Christmas treasures. It always makes me pause as memories of past Christmases crowd into my mind. Below is a post from 2011 that I’d like to share once again.

Behold one of the Christmas treasures I rescued from my parents’ house before it was sold. It’s the 1948 Christmas Annual Edition of the Louis Allis Messenger. I wasn’t around in 1948, but this particular book made an appearance every Christmas for as long as I can remember. I loved the contents of the book with its Christmas carols, poems, customs from other lands, and beautiful art. But it was the cover illustrations and the double page spread in the middle of the book that kept me fascinated for hours. I immersed myself in George Hinke’s illustrations and became part of the enchanting world he created.

 

cover

Front Cover

back cover

Back Cover

beard

Inside Front Cover

elves

Inside Back Cover

double

Double-Page Spread

I spent hours examining every tiny detail in the scenes. I named the elves and made myself a secret elf, feeding the cats, joining in the pillow fight, opening letters for Santa, and counting the good girls and boys. This book still has the power to evoke delightful memories and the feeling of magic that was part of my childhood.

“Our hearts grow tender with childhood memories and love of kindred, and we are better throughout the year for having, in spirit, become a child again at Christmas-time.”  ~Laura Ingalls Wilder

 

I wish you wonderful childhood memories.

Advertisements

A Gift of Imagination

Posted December 7, 2017 by cathyso3
Categories: Picture Books

Tags: , , , ,

If someone asks me what I want for Christmas, I’d say a green umbrella. Why?  Because it’s much more than an ordinary umbrella. It’s an object that tickles your imagination and takes you on extraordinary adventures.

umbrella

The Green Umbrella is written by Jackie Azúa Kramer and illustrated by Maral Sassouni. On a rainy day, Elephant is taking a walk with his umbrella when he meets Hedgehog who insists Elephant has his boat and tells him of his boat adventures. When Elephant says Hedgehog is mistaken, Elephant offers to share his umbrella with Hedgehog. Along comes Cat who insists Elephant has his tent and tells of his tent adventures. Elephant says Cat is mistaken but offers to share his umbrella. The story continues as Elephant meets different animals who are convinced his umbrella is not really an umbrella but something else. In the end, despite their differences, they all become friends. Maral Sassouni’s illustrations are whimsical and rendered in soft pastels. The Green Umbrella is a delightful book of imagination, sharing, and friendship.

Get me that green umbrella!

 

 

Goodnight Everyone

Posted November 30, 2017 by cathyso3
Categories: Picture Books

Tags: , , , , , ,

We’ve all had those nights when our kids just don’t want to go to sleep. Well, Chris Haughton knows how to solve that. He’s the author/illustrator of many award-winning books, including my favorite, Shhh! We Have a Plan.

haughton

In his book, Goodnight Everyone, the forest animals are sleepy – the mice, the hares, the deer, and Great Big Bear. However, Little Bear is wide awake. He wants to play, but all of his friends are too tired. Soon Little Bear gives a huge yawn and decides it’s time to go to sleep like everyone else. The story is simply told, but the techniques used by Chris Haughton are what make this book so likable. The color palette is vibrant and reminiscent of the evening sky after the sun sets. The cut pages will delight readers as they see the animals get bigger with each page turn. As the size of the animals grows, so do their yawns and their sleeping sounds. The endpapers are another treat to behold. The beginning of the book depicts the southern night sky and its constellations and the placement of the planets, moon, earth, and sun. The end of the book depicts the northern night sky and the placement of the planets, moon, earth, and sun and the constellations where Little Bear and Great Bear are easy to pick out. This charming book is sure to get your wide-awake youngster yawning and ready for some zzz’s.

 

 

 

 

Happy Thanksgiving!

Posted November 23, 2017 by cathyso3
Categories: Holidays

Tags:

On this Thanksgiving Day and throughout the year, may we embrace the ideals of compassion, tolerance, and kindness, and be thankful for the love of family and friends.

Wishing everyone a day of warmth and happiness!

bountiful thanksgving

A Winning Team

Posted November 16, 2017 by cathyso3
Categories: Picture Books

Tags: , , , , ,

wolf

Author, Mac Barnett, and illustrator, Jon Klassen, have teamed up once again to create another winner. The Wolf, The Duck & The Mouse is a tongue in cheek or a-duck-and-a-mouse-in-a-wolf’s-belly tale. Everything about this book is perfect – the pacing, the dialogue, the humor, and the delightfully funny illustrations done in muted tones and mixed media. The story is simply told. A mouse is gobbled up by a wolf and meets a duck who lives inside the wolf’s belly. The mouse sees life is good for the duck and wants to stay. The two celebrate with a dance and give the wolf a woeful stomach ache. Things go well for the duck and the mouse until a hunter tries to shoot the wolf. The duck and the mouse fight to defend their home and save the wolf who is thankful not to have perished at the hands of the hunter. He grants the two a favor. What did they ask? To find out the rest of the story, you’ll have to read this hilarious book!

Four Words = A Clever Book

Posted November 9, 2017 by cathyso3
Categories: Picture Books

Tags: , , , , ,

I’ve always enjoyed Emily Gravett’s books. I recently came across one I hadn’t seen before and fell in love with its creativity.

orange pear apple

Orange Pear Apple Bear is an excellent read-aloud for the very young. Emily Gravett repeats the title’s four words throughout the book until the last page where she adds the perfect illustration and word to end her story. Orange, pear, apple, bear are arranged in varying order and in different scenarios. The clever simplicity of this book will keep readers engaged as each page turn reveals illustrations done in pencil and pastel watercolors in an imaginative setup of bear, fruit, and words. Gravett’s genius in art and wordplay make this a fun story to read over and over.

Check this out and the many other books from award-winning author/illustrator Emily Gravett.

See You Around

Posted November 2, 2017 by cathyso3
Categories: Special Days

Tags: , , , ,

A ball. A wheel. A pie. These are a small sampling of circles that are all around you. Today happens to be “Look for Circles Day.” Have some fun with your youngsters. Whether you’re young or old, keep the circular ball rolling and read, sing and count together today.

Books with circles:

hole

The Book with a Hole by Herve Tullet

round

Sir Cumference and the First Round Table written by Cindy Neuschwander and illustrated by Wayne Geehan (Check out the series.)

circle square

So Many Circles, So Many Squares by Tana Hoban

spots

 600 Black Spots by David A. Carter

city

City Shapes is written by Diana Murray and illustrated by Bryan Collier

Songs about circles:

Circle Song – Jack Hartmann

Circle Songs for Early Learners 

The Circle Song with Didipop Music

If you’re counting, did you remember to count all of the circles in this post? Don’t be surprised if by the end of the day you find yourself going in circles. Have fun!


%d bloggers like this: